Posted by: L. E. Barnes | October 6, 2010

The “Theology” of Marquis Signs (?)

Fellow Catholic blogger “Argent by the Tiber” (who happens to be a friend of mine) posted the following remarks a couple of days ago:

The Universalist “Church” just a few blocks from my parish where I work has had some interesting discussions and events in the last few weeks. I don’t know much about Universalist beliefs or lack of beliefs. Perhaps reading the marquis tells me enough.

A month ago, the marquis advertised “Water Ceremony” and Potluck. So, it’s not baptism, but a ceremony. Are there words spoken whilst conducting the ceremony? What exactly is the water ceremony for. I suppose it has the washing action, like washing hands.

Two weeks ago, the marquis displayed “The Creedless Church”. Ah, so they don’t believe in anything. Why even bother to call the community a church?

But remember, this was the church that earlier this year had “Responsible Eating” and “Faith and Global Warming”.

The Baptist Chapel a mile down the road this past week asked: “Is your bag full of holes”.

I ought to write a book on the Theology of Marquis Signs.

Thanks for the reflection, Argent. And maybe such a book would benefit the world of theological inquiry! 😉

Indeed, just what can we surmise about a church from its marquis signs? I’m nost surprised by the inane language of the notices on the Unitarian-Universalist church signs. During my years as an agnostic, I visited our town’s UU congregation a few times, and while the folks there were generally nice people and were friendly to me, they really constituted little more than a social group with a very thin religious veneer. As my father said about UU’s, they believe in “everything and nothing.”

Have you come across any church marquis signs that made you laugh, cry, ponder, or feel disgusted or puzzled? (Perhaps even at your own church?)



  1. Cheap shots at UU are your right, of course, but if you’d like to know the real story we’d be happy to chat with you about it. Any such conversation must rightfully include the rich heritage we share, one in which many people over the centuries have sacrificed, sometimes paying the highest price of all. I welcome you to visit us at this FB group…
    … and we’ll be more than happy to answer your questions (which, of course, will totally refute that “everything and nothing” silliness).

  2. […] The “Theology” of Marquis Signs (?) […]

  3. There is a Methodist Church in New Orleans that used to have the best signs, cute, memorable, but pithy too.

    • My uncle and aunt have a book of photos of church marquis signs with pithy and/or humorous remarks. They can be both funny and memorable.

  4. Good project, the book. I’ve seen some very thought-provoking marquis in my day, but off hand, can’t remember any. Here in the Bible belt we see them often at small churches.

    • Now that you mention it, it does seem that these kinds of signs are more common at small churches than large ones. I wonder why….

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: